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Friday, June 24, 2011

Blog Friend Feature: Kelley's Break Room

Do you ever read a post and think I wish I had thought of that? This week's Blog Friend Feature makes me have moments like that all the time. She's so incredibly witty. She managed to snag a fabulous writing job... just from her hilarious tweets. It takes skills to impress people that much in under 140 characters.  Though, today, you get to see her in full effect: Meet Kelley from Kelley's Break Room
"When Crush crushed me"

Before I start blabbing my mouth right off, let me thank you, Shell, for having me in the BFF chair.  This is truly an honor!  Nice chair!  Like so many of us, I have been touched by your words and stories and am grateful that you are sharing your space with me today.

Much time was spent trying to figure out what kind of post to write.  The posts on my site are 98.9% not serious and mostly have to do with silly topics like misnamed neighborhoods, song parodies, Spanish-speaking manatees, Mister Rogers and games, like Captcha Balderdash and Name That Job.  Given that Shell's posts are uplifting many times, I decided to mix some serious and some silly.

For my son's 5th birthday in October 2009, we took him to Disney World at Halloween.  My husband dressed up as Darth Vader, I was Princess Leah and my son was a Storm Trooper.  We left our baby at home with my parents with his Ewok costume.  Like everyone else, we had a really great time, although my son did keep asking, "When we are done with ____, can we go back to us hotel and go swimming?"   WHAT IN THE HECK?

Perhaps I had the most fun acting like I was in the paparazzi.  I kept getting distracted by ladies with big wings.  These pair of wings were spotted in line for the Jungle Cruise:

Ladies with ridiculous Disney-walking shoes like these below also distracted me:

And especially these below.  Goodness gracious alive.  I had to chase this lady down to Pooh's "Hunny Pot" to take this picture.  I'm pretty sure I had to perch one foot on an old stranger's fanny pack and the other on Billy Bob's gut to get it, too.

My cheerful mood soon plummeted, though.

At stinkin' EPCOT.

I actually LOVE Epcot.  It has always been one of my favorites of the various parks. You might think my day went south when my Norwegian chocolate melted or when I compared myself to the belly dancer in Morocco or when I didn't have time to finish my margarita in Mexico (which, let's be honest, all are true), but that wasn't it. 

It was when we were at the Turtle Talk With Crush show.



I don't really blame him.  His behavior was typical and was not malicious.

But still.

My very young 5-year-old, who really looks almost 6 given his height, sat right up front with all of the other kids while my husband and I sat in the back.  Crush, the big turtle from Finding Nemo, swims around in his tank and interacts with the kids through some hocus-pocus computer magic.  He "sees" the kids with their hands raised and encourages them to ask anything they would like.  It is such a fun, fun time for everyone!

Unless your son is speech delayed.

Like mine. 

His brand new 5-year-old little hand was raised as high as it could reach.  He didn't get picked out of the 6 times he probably lifted his hand.  He begged to go through the line again to see the Crush show again once the show was over.  He wanted so badly to have a chance to talk to that turtle.

He was oblivious to his communication difficulties.

Dory is...not-so-smart.
During the second show, after raising his hand probably 4-5 times, Crush picked him.

The whole room was staring at him.  I was holding my breath.  And cringing.  I was happy he wanted to talk to Crush and was brave enough to raise his little hand, but knew this interaction was probably not going to be pretty.

My son said something.

No one understood him. 

Crush was staring at him like he was Dory or something.

"Duuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuude, like, what are you saying, duuuuuuuuude?  I can't understand you, dude. DUDE!"  *Cue a really, really long laugh track that includes all the voices inside that room that day

Dagger in my heart.

My son is still smiling and wants to ask another question.  He doesn't realize the laughter is at his expense.  He asks another question that is not understood.

"Duuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuude, I'm having trouble here understanding you, dude.  Hahahahaha!!!"  Crush was joined by a bunch of other "hahahahahahaha"s from the crowd.

Crush tries one more time to have my son repeat his question.  This time he asks something that everyone somehow understands this time.  He asked Crush, "Do you wear a hat?  Do you burp or toot?"

Oh, dear Lord.

"Duuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuude, what did you say?  Ummmm....this is crazy, dude.  Like, okay, well, uhhhh, YES.  Hahahahaha!!!  Did you also ask if I wear a hat?  Like, no, I don't wear a hat, dude.  You're crazy, dude.  Who has another question?"

I was so very relieved that Crush caught any of the words my son said, even if they happened to be "burp" and "toot", because I knew that one more failed communication attempt would definitely be noticed by my little guy.  He would have been crushed at that point, too.

It was clear throughout their little interaction that Crush was trying to get some laughs at my son's expense.  I wasn't really upset with Crush at all.

My heart just hurt for my son.

He was still smiling, though.  Beaming, actually.

Almost two years later, my little guy, now almost 7 and communicating well, still remembers he asked Crush those exact questions.

He is still smiling about it. 

Please leave Kelley some comment love here and then go follow her blog if you don't already! 

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Blogger Unknown said...

What great questions! Most young boys would want to know the answers.

I could never walk in those shoes.

June 24, 2011 at 7:32 AM  
Blogger Heather said...

Not fair that Kelley is making me get all teary eyed today. WTH!!!
I know that it wasn't the typical experience with Crush, but in your son's eyes it was still perfect.

Good for you for restraining yourself I might have marched up there and been all "He said ...." and that would have totally ruined the moment.

June 24, 2011 at 7:35 AM  
Blogger Sorta Southern Single Mom said...

My Word- You made me laugh and cry all in one post... I love to people watch... on the flip side, it's probably why I'm so self conscious... I know there are people like me out there judging and I care.

You'd think the people at Disney would be a little more prepared! You cater to kids and kids come in all shapes, sizes, and languages!

June 24, 2011 at 7:52 AM  
Blogger Raquel's World said...

Awww I'm not sure if it;s sadder when kids know they are being picked at or when they don't? Either way he had a great time and a memory for life so that's all that matters.

June 24, 2011 at 8:06 AM  
Blogger Jen said...

Wow...it would have been all I could do not to fly through the screen and try to murder that fake turtle...not cool, Disney, not cool.

June 24, 2011 at 8:24 AM  
Blogger Ann Imig said...

Ouch. I think Crush is bastard.

June 24, 2011 at 8:38 AM  
Blogger Heather said...

Do fish toot? NOw I must know.

I am glad it was a good experience for your little guy and that he looks back on it fondly.

I can't wait to visit your blog.

June 24, 2011 at 8:39 AM  
Blogger Alison said...

Kelley is so awesome, such a genuine person and hilariously funny. This story is sweet, funny (the pictures!), touching and heartfelt. So glad your little guy wasn't crushed. That's the beauty with kids, isn't it? They always see the bright side.

June 24, 2011 at 8:56 AM  
Blogger Renee said...

The best part is that your son is still remembering that day...in a good way! You had me hanging on every word. Not sure I have any nails left to chew off!

June 24, 2011 at 9:10 AM  
Blogger Grumpy Grateful Mom said...

Thank you for sharing you story. I'm so glad he got his questions in!

I think it's wonderful you gave him that opportunity, especially knowing it might not be easy for him.

June 24, 2011 at 9:21 AM  
Anonymous Megan (Best of Fates) said...

Okay, I'm not sure I'm going to think of Crush the same way again.

But, really, I should have known.

Never trust a turtle.

(p.s. Yay for Kelley - SUCH a fabulous choice, I love her!)

June 24, 2011 at 9:32 AM  
Blogger Katie said...

What an awesome child you have! First, his questions were wonderful and funny, second, he had the nerve to actually participate.

I think the hardest part of being a mom is how much it hurts at times. I applaud you for not jumping in and trying to rescue him. I do that WAAAAY to often. It's something I need to work on.

Great post, Kelley!

June 24, 2011 at 9:33 AM  
Anonymous Mandi Miller said...

Totally subscribed to her RSS! She is hilarious!!

June 24, 2011 at 9:36 AM  
Blogger Unknown said...

Oh Kelley! My heart broke for you in the moment you described....it's so hard to be a Mom. I have had similar experiences with my oldest for a variety of reasons. I completely get it!

And PS to both of you - thanks for making my day - two of my most favorite bloggers in ONE place! Yay!!

June 24, 2011 at 9:56 AM  
Anonymous Anna ~ Random Handprints said...

what a great story, so glad u shared it.

June 24, 2011 at 10:02 AM  
Blogger VictoriaKP said...

Oh Crush, I'm SO disappointed in you. Glad your son was still smiling. Must've been hard to not crack that turtle's shell!

June 24, 2011 at 10:59 AM  
Blogger Debbie said...

awwwww - this tugs at the heart. That's the beauty of being a mom - we notice all things others do not and are there to step in as raging lions if needed. Sounds like your little one wasn't affected negatively by anything which is wonderful. I have a speech delayed son so I can def. relate to this story.

June 24, 2011 at 11:06 AM  
Blogger Kir said...

I was laughing and crying, WOW. What an incredible day, a life changing moment. Thank you so much for sharing that.

While I don't have a speech delayed child, I do have a child who is going to be ADD, I can feel it, he's smart but ssooo distracted. I know that it will be hard to "focus" him as he grows.

I could feel your pride in him, feel that swell of love for your son. WOW.

June 24, 2011 at 11:42 AM  
Blogger Lisa @ Two Bears Farm said...

Oh gosh. As a parent you just always want to make it alright for them. Your son asked wonderful questions - pretty sure my 4 yr old is totally wondering about farting fish as well.

June 24, 2011 at 11:45 AM  
Blogger Kiki said...

Oh, you know I relate. My 5 yr old just got told by a friend 3 times in a row that he couldn't understand him. Broke my heart and reminded me that speech 3 times a week is worth it.

June 24, 2011 at 12:25 PM  
Blogger Carol said...

Awe, Kelley, this is so endearing. Bless his little heart...the innocence of children is such a gift!

PS: Kinda diggin' this side of ya too :)

June 24, 2011 at 12:52 PM  
Blogger Joanna said...

Aww. I would have thrown something at the turtle and tell him to get his hearing checked as he is like a 100+ years old.

June 24, 2011 at 1:09 PM  
Blogger Jennifer Hall said...

What a gift innocence is! Maybe one day when he thinks back on it he'll see they way it really was, but I wouldn't ever point it out to him.

June 24, 2011 at 1:17 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

You had me smiling and tearing up all at once! Fabulous post.

June 24, 2011 at 1:54 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

My heart is aching right now! What a bittersweet experience. Love this mama ... hopping over to her blog to check her out!

June 24, 2011 at 2:38 PM  
Blogger The Mommy Therapy said...

Those wings were on a woman? I would have sworn that was a guy.

I find these types of experiences with my kids amazing. I feel drenched in embarrassment for them, but they are far more resilient and good at realizing that it's good to feel confident, even if everyone else is laughing.

I wish you could have filmed those people walking a far distance in those shoes, or asked them to take their shoes off so you could photograph the damage that is surely there. Next time.

June 24, 2011 at 3:14 PM  
Blogger Desperate Housemommy said...

First, may I congratulate Shell on her supremely wise selection of Kelley as this week's BFF?

Secondly -Kelley - I just loved this post. You are such a fabulous mama to those two little sweethearts. Giving you a virtual hug right now, girlfriend!

June 24, 2011 at 3:16 PM  
Blogger A Mommy in the City said...

Love his questions. So great that he could put all of the laughter aside and laugh with him and have a great time!

June 24, 2011 at 3:25 PM  
Blogger KristinFilut said...

I really think it can be a blessing that our children can be so oblivious to how the world is reacting around them. There has been more than one occasion that had me reaching for my Mama Bear suit to kick the butt of someone who broke my heart at my daughter's expense, and it totally went over her head.

June 24, 2011 at 4:16 PM  
Blogger Unknown said...

I'm just glad he didn't quite get that people were laughing at him and that he had a good memory of it. Because he's not my son and it still hurt. We just want these little people to be protected.

By the way, it wasn't the grey suede boots that got me with those enormous heel, it was that she was wearing them with (what looked like) teal terry cloth shorts!

June 24, 2011 at 4:17 PM  
Blogger The Random Blogette said...

This is so adorable! It is amazing how kids just brush some things off sometimes. Sometimes, we as parents, take things differently than our kids do. I know that I have been crushed for my kids on several occasions even when my kids remember it as a good time. I am glad that he remembers it as a happy time!

June 24, 2011 at 4:26 PM  
Blogger Not Just Another Jennifer said...

Oh Kelley, I'm so glad it worked out ok for him! That must have been so hard. Watching our kids struggle is worse than anything we struggle with ourselves. Great post! Glad to see you here!

June 24, 2011 at 4:44 PM  
Blogger Jessica said...

You think Crush would be a little nicer to kids. I'm glad that it turned out okay for your son and he got to ask his very important question. I probably would have asked the same thing if I had been there.

June 24, 2011 at 6:05 PM  
Blogger Cindi said...

Glad your son can remember the conversation with a smile. :)

(And admittedly curious if fish toot or burp. LoL)

June 24, 2011 at 8:11 PM  
Blogger Julie said...

Oh I have so been in the position of watching my child want something, try something brave, believe so DESPERATELY in his/her ability to pull it off while I'm in the back doubting...

willing them to put their hands down.

I worry all the time about their feelings being hurt or their self-esteem crushed by failure when I should be cheering on their attempts. Screw the consequences. They are BRAVE.

Shame on me and yay for you for letting him try. And try. And try.

You were cringing, but he's still smiling.

Which is so beyond awesome.

But now?

Can we go swim in the pool?

June 24, 2011 at 8:29 PM  
Blogger Natalie said...

Thanks for sharing...I know I would have been cringing as well worried about my boy...but it looks like he had a great time and remembers it fondly!

June 24, 2011 at 9:24 PM  
Blogger KSK said...

I'm glad your son has a good memory of the event... I'm sorry that Crush was a jerkface!
**Holy Heck! Who would wear shoes like THAT to an amusement park?!?!!

June 24, 2011 at 10:21 PM  
Blogger The Woven Moments said...

I don't care if you are a cartoon... mess with my kid and I will f$%k a turtle up. Just sayin'.

Thank goodness he didn't catch on (or have an older sibling that did).

Seems to me Disney has some 'splainin' to do about sensitivity to kids with special needs!

June 24, 2011 at 11:09 PM  
Blogger Rach (DonutsMama) said...

Oh sweet little boy! I'm so glad he was brave enough to ask the question. You had me holding my breath as I read this. Off to check out your blog, my twitter triplet!

June 24, 2011 at 11:59 PM  
Blogger Alexandra said...

I think Crush was being an ahole.

Thank god your little guy doesn't remember it that way.

Great to see you here!

June 25, 2011 at 1:54 AM  
Blogger Kimberly said...

I love Disney, but I think Crush was being an ahole. Glad your little guy didn't see that and instead remembers that Crush answered his question.

June 25, 2011 at 2:00 AM  
Blogger Mom of 12 said...

I am not knowing who Crush is, but I do know a thing or two about speech-delay. My 17-year-old is autistic, but he was considered "speech delayed" until second grade. We had many moments like this where people just didn't have the patience to figure out what he was trying to say. I feel for you! I'm glad he took it in stride and the memory still makes him happy.

June 25, 2011 at 3:33 AM  
Blogger Rebecca Dot Com said...

by the way, seriously, what's up with above comment... seriously, lol, moving on . . .

this weeks bff rocks - can't wait to go check her out! :)

happy saturday :)

June 25, 2011 at 10:57 AM  
Anonymous The Flying Chalupa said...

First, I want to say those are indeed some stellar wings. And I love that you went around Disney taking hilarious pictures.

But Crush! What a jerk! Thank god kids are so wonderfully attuned to the positive at that age.

June 26, 2011 at 12:19 PM  
Blogger Unknown said...

We saw that Crush show at Disney. So amazing (in a freakish way) how it interacted with the kids! I'm glad it didn't crush your little guy and I'm sorry it crushed you.

June 26, 2011 at 9:47 PM  
Blogger Lazarus said...

Awesome story KKell, thanks for sharing it with us.

June 26, 2011 at 11:52 PM  
Blogger Laura Greene said...

Awwww, that made me a little teary. I'm glad your little one enjoyed his experience!

June 27, 2011 at 7:25 PM  
Blogger Unknown said...

Like Crush has any room to talk, with his surf speak.

I am so, so glad this didn't phase your son. As the stepmama of a speech delayed kid, this broke my heart. I would have been pissed at the first laugh track, even if it is a computer programme.

June 27, 2011 at 9:30 PM  
Blogger Jessica @ My Simply Complicated said...

Shell, I too, love to watch Kelley's tweets because they are the most hilarious things ever on the face of the planet earth. 140 and she nails it every single time.

Kelley, my heart hurts for you, but I'm so happy your son was able to talk to Crush. It sounds like, ultimately, he remembers the best part...being understood when he said TOOT in front of the whole room! What a sweetie! :)

June 28, 2011 at 12:14 AM  

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